19 Dec 2019 Lvl. 2
Alert created on: 12 Nov 2018 n° 124/2018 Italy
Deputy Prime Minister Di Maio and former MP Battista Insulted Journalists
On 10 November 2018, the Italian Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio and the Five Star Movement MP Alessandro di Battista insulted Italian journalists on social media. They published two long posts on their official Facebook pages calling Italian journalists “infamous jackals” ("infimi sciacalli") and “whores” ("puttane", "pennivendoli"). Luigi Di Maio has also announced his intention to draft a new law to restrict the activities of publishers. The Federazione Nazionale della Stampa Italiana (FNSI) has called for public demonstrations in major cities across Italy to protest in the strongest terms against the use by elected politicians of such inflammatory and insulting language against journalist, and to demand significant reforms to the country’s laws and practices to protect the freedom of the press.
- Mapping Media Freedom report: "Italy: Senior M5S politicians denigrate journalists on social media"
- News report by daily newspaper "Il Messaggero": "Raggi assolta, Di Maio attacca i giornalisti: «Infimi sciacalli». E Di Battista rincara la dose"
- Alessandro Di Battista's Facebook post
- Luigi Di Maio's Facebook post
- Statement from Federazione Nazionale della Stampa Italiana (FNSI): "'Giù le mani dall'informazione', il 13 novembre flash mob nei capoluoghi di regione"
19 Dec 2019
Reply from the Italian authorities (information provided by the Presidency of the Council of Ministers)